TNO to develop groundwater treatment for fluoride-free drinking water in Mara, Tanzania
Dutch applied research institute TNO is developing a groundwater treatment method in Tanzania whereby the fluoride is removed and the water is made potable.
The method must be able to be used locally, be very cheap and be used on a small scale by the local population. And the energy costs of the process should be minimal.
The first treatment plant will provide fluoride-free water in the future to around 2000 residents in an area with a population of 600,000.
High concentrations fluoride in groundwater
TNO started the project in July in collaboration with the SNV Netherlands Development Organisation, BoP Innovation Centre, Hatenboer-Water and Dunea in Tanzania to supply the Mara region with healthy fluoride-free drinking water in a sustainable, decentralised way.
Fluoride is naturally present in the groundwater in some countries. Higher concentrations fluoride can be very harmful to health, with an overdose of fluoride leading to serious teeth and skeletal problems.
If shown to be suitable, the method will be offered in more countries and regions.
Suitability for local use
TNO started to assess and select existing methods to remove fluoride from the water. Next, the methods will be developed and modified so that they comply with the demands of the local situation.
The treatment must be able to be performed by the local population at very low or no energy costs to enable the method to be used easily in small villages of up to 2,000 residents.
When the method complies with the demands of the local situation, Dutch watertechnology company Hatenboer-Water will build a pilot plant to demonstrate the method with local partners.
About TNO's Innovation for development programme
TNO started a Innovation for Development programme to develop demand-driven products and services that match the purchasing power of people on the lowest incomes in developing and emerging markets. Through a co-creation process involving partners and stakeholders the institute launches market-based and community-based innovations to ensure a sustainable socioeconomic impact.
TNO annually makes one million euros available for pro-poor innovation. This budget is leveraged by deploying the financing opportunities provided by various partners, such as the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, NGOs such as ICCO, Cordaid, WWF and Hivos and public-private contract partnerships.
This news item was originally published on the website of TNO.
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